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Improved online services make it simpler and easier for Australian students to report income

Improved online services make it simpler and easier for Australian students to report income

Featured image: Screenshot of the Department of Human
Services webpage section for students and trainees.

Thanks to online improvements released over the past few
months, nearly 16,000 students have switched to using online services to tell
Centrelink when they’ve started or stopped working rather than having to call
or visit a service centre. 

These improvements mean students can claim and manage their
payments easily online and were delivered as part of the Government’s Welfare
Payment Infrastructure Transformation (WPIT)
Program.

According to the media
release
, the online service also automatically places students on and off a
reporting schedule when their employment changes so they are fully aware of
their obligations, which helps them keep their details up-to-date and avoid a
debt.

Other recent online improvements mean students can also now:

·     
Choose from a list of universities and courses
specific to that institution when they update their study details online;

·     
Submit an early claim for independent Youth
Allowance up to 13 weeks before their 22nd birthday, without needing to provide
parental income information;

·     
Answer fewer questions when they lodge a claim
if they already receive certain welfare payments, and find out earlier if
they’re not eligible so they can plan accordingly; and

·     
Book and reschedule social worker and job seeker
appointments online.

Minister for Human Services, Alan Tudge said students are
seeing the benefits of improvements delivered by the Government’s investment in
modernising welfare service delivery.

“We are continually improving our systems to make it easier
and simpler for people to interact with Centrelink online, at a time and place
that suits them,” Minister Tudge said.

“Right now, the Government is delivering faster and more
streamlined services for students, but these improvements will be rolled out to
benefit other welfare recipients soon.

 “Some students get debts because they do not declare their
income on time – these online improvements make it much easier to report simple
changes in their circumstances so they get the right payment, at the right
time.”

Together with the 250 new call centre staff, our new digital
assistants managing 650,000 interactions to date, the updated website,
streamlined claim processes and the online Claim Tracker, these improvements
will help reduce call and service centre wait times.

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